Pets In Space Authors’ Interview

Remember that blog about this fun anthology coming out that I reblogged last week? Here is some more. I am so looking forward to this book!

Whiskey With My Book

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When an animal has a feature role in a book, I am immediately drawn to that book. My life is enhanced by cats (many cats), two of which are pictured here. I have also had the joy of several dogs/walking buddies in the past. So this Pets in Space anthology is something I can’t help but be enthusiastic about. Plus, Pets in Space is promoting a very good charity.  Needless to say, Pets in Space is on my TBR list!  (If you agree, you will find pre-order links at the end of this article.)

img_0065 Maddie

So, I am thinking…..the authors of the Pets in Space anthology must have similar feelings about the animals in their life and in fiction. I could be wrong. But I don’t think so. Just to make sure though – I could not pass up the opportunity to find out. So here it is. Pets…

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Another Peek at Pets in Space

I don’t do this often – like only once or twice – but this just looked like too much fun not to pass along. I mean really – PETS IN SPACE! I am just geek enough to totally love this.

Whiskey With My Book

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Pets in Space is coming soon.  With a release date of 10/11, the excitement is rising!  Here is a new trailer to pique your interest:

I love the little Astro-Pup!

But maybe you are not a video person. Are you one of those people who prefer the written word? Perhaps you would be interested in this free first chapter sampler of the Pets in Space anthology:

Instafreebie – Pets in Space

Next week, I’ll have an interview with Pets in Space authors. I hope you will come back and check it out!

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About Pets in Space

Even an alien needs a pet…

Join the adventure as nine pet loving sci-fi romance authors take you out of this world and pull you into their action-packed stories filled with suspense, laughter, and romance. The alien pets have an agenda that will capture the hearts of those they touch. Follow along as…

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The Beauty of Fall

 

A few days ago one of the authors I follow (Sam Cheever) asked the question: “What do you like about fall?” Since it was a contest offering, if I remember correctly, a decent gc to the book store I use the most, I answered the challenge.

After I finished writing, it was like, hey this is beautiful. This came out of me? Wow! I should share this with y’all. So here it is . . .

Spring and Fall are my favorite seasons. Why? The color. In spring color is fresh and new. In the fall, it is bright and multi-hued. Beautiful.

Now that being said, I think Fall edges out Spring for me. Although Spring heralds the new beginning, Fall brings the bounty of the harvest. All the wonderful fresh produce. The odors are amazing. Enough to have the mouth watering. Yum! Working a whole food type diet is so much easier in the fall. The abundance is awesome. 

As if that isn’t enough reason to love Fall, there is my favorite holiday – Halloween. So much fun!

Maybe my love of Fall is this last big party before the hibernation of winter mixed with the fresh, crisp air relieving the hot humidity of Summer. Whatever the reason, Fall is my favorite season.

A few days later I got the following response:What beautiful sentiments! I agree on both counts. Spring is the magic of rebirth, things going from dull brown to vibrant green. And Fall is a dying of sorts, but it looks and feels like a celebration. Such a natural dichotomy. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. I enjoyed them very much!”

 I loved that answer too. It gave me the push I needed, not to mention the validation, to get a move on and actually share it.

Thank you Sam Cheever for asking and inspiring me.

Color tour

From the Crochet Hook

One of the things I wanted to do this year was share some of my crafting goodies.  Why do I procrastinate so much?  Question for another time I think.

So what do you think?

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Mr. and Mrs. Snowman with Junior and Sissy.  Aren’t they cute?  I had fun making them.  I actually liked them so well, they sat here on my table until just a couple of weeks ago.  Decided that since it was the first of May I really needed to put them away.

 

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There is also this group of winter friends.  A penguin, a polar bear, and a red-nosed reindeer.  The antlers are up in the shadows.  I am not known for quality photography.

 

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The beginning of the stuffed toy phase began with these cute Halloween creatures.  The corn candy is my favorite.  It was fun to make and is so cute.  The mummy had all those wraps but turned out okay. Frankenstein was kind of fun too.

 

When I got these kits, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with them, but they looked like they would be fun to play with.  They were.  Now the questions is, do I want to keep them, sell them, or give them away?

Selling them would help the pocket book.  But then I have the issue of how would I send them?  I don’t drive.  I don’t have a car.  How do I get to the post office?  OR do I want to spend the extra $15.00 to have UPS come and pick them up.  Could I really add that much extra to the cost to make that a viable option?

See why I haven’t started selling my goodies?  So many questions and issues.  It is frustrating as well as a good excuse for procrastination.  Will work on that.

But, I have now put them out into the world.   Tell me what you think.

Fulfilling Goals

One of my goals for this year – again – was to blog more often.  I am doing well with that.  It is March already and I haven’t posted yet.  Why is that?

I am a world class procrastinator.  I know this.  Something I am working on – with little success.  I mean really, there is no hurry.  I can do it later.  Right?  I keep forgetting that later doesn’t always get here.

I have no confidence in myself.  There has always been someone to shoot down whatever I tried to do.  I know the lesson about not always looking for approval from others, but it doesn’t always sink in or manifest when I need it most.  There is always that little voice – it often sounds like my mother – telling me I can’t do it.  I know better, but . . . Working on that one too.

Yes, I am a hot mess – most of the time.  A constant work in progress.  One would think that at my age (and we are not going to discuss what that is) I would have learned more or at least learned how to apply what I have learned.  But I appear to be an even bigger mess than I was a few years ago.

On the positive side, I do know this.  Knowing is half the battle.  The other half is figuring out how to fix or improve things, and then how to apply what I have figured out.  I am finding the application to be easier said than done for the above mentioned reasons.

But, I will keep plugging away.  Something is bound to stick some day!

The “LAST” great move

It has been quite a while since I have posted anything here on my blog.  Best intentions and all that. I think I may have even said something similar before.  But, life and best intentions don’t always jive.  In spite of that, I see that I am acquiring followers.  I have to thank you hardy souls for following a blog that hasn’t had a new post in months.  I appreciate your faith.  So, what do I have to share today?

Yes, I have moved, AGAIN.  I haven’t blogged long enough for that statement to make much sense to most of you.  Only family and close friends will know that I move often, about every three years has been my average for the last twenty years, and every once in a while it is further than across town.  I have a bit of the vagabond in me I guess.

Anyway, this move has taken me from Texas back to my home state of Michigan.  When I moved to Texas some three years ago I was looking forward to no cold and no snow.  In the big picture of things, that was kind of true.  Cold was usually no more than thirty degrees, and snow never lasted more than a day or so.  However, in exchange for those minor benefits there was no color or hills.  Everything was brown and flat.

Until I lived in Texas for a while and found myself missing it, I have also lived most of my life close to a major body of water.   Lake Michigan was always just a few minutes away.  Even when I lived on the west coast, I was minutes away from the ocean.  Northwest Texas is landlocked.  What Texans there call lakes are little more than puddles.  Dry took on a whole new meaning for me.

Then there is the heat.  OMG.  I spent all my time inside my climate controlled apartment because I could not deal with the heat from about April thru late September or later.  One can take off only so many clothes.  This was not the life for me.  I commend the hardy souls who like Texas.  I am not one of them and it was time to move again.

As with the move to Texas, “this is the last time I am moving.”  *grin*  We shall see how long that lasts.  But for now, I am quite pleased with my decision.  I gave much thought to where I wanted to move.  I adore the Pacific Northwest.  Those of you who follow me may have picked up on that somewhere.  But, cost of living is prohibitive for me at this time.  I thought about Kentucky.  A cousin lives there and I haven’t tried it there yet.  I have also made some on line friends in that neck of the woods.  But upon further rumination, I decided “coming home” was the better choice.

Only a brother and a sister remain of my immediate family and they are both sick.  I felt the need to spend time with them.  So calls were made, plans were outlined, boxes were packed, the truck was loaded, and here I am.  Back in the community where I was born.

For right now I am staying with my sister.  Now that is an experience and if I get around to it, I may even write about that.  But suffice it to say, I am enjoying myself here.  I don’t get much done, reading or writing, because of distraction.   This is the view I have next to where my computer is set up.

View from Kelly's poarch

Yes, that is a deck overlooking a lovely lake.  I get easily distracted by the ducks on the lake.  Or the fishermen.  Or watching the fish jump.  It is so relaxing and serene.  Who needs the escape of a book when one can gaze upon this all day long?

Needless to say, not much reading is getting done these days.  I will miss this view when my house is ready for me to move into the first of September.  Did I mention the move is still in progress?  But, I will still have a decent view from there.  There is a lovely old apple orchard across the road where some horses graze.  They are often joined my deer and other wild life.  I look forward to that for its own sake.  But I will visit my sister often for this view.  Thank goodness it is only a few blocks away.

For now, I need to go gaze some more.

Yep! What she said!

I have been feeling down, I mean way down lately, for a number of reasons.  The catalyst was some minor thing that someone said that really meant nothing.  But because of a lot of things, I let it get to me and color my world for a bit and it made me rather miserable.  Stupid really.  I had forgotten this little fact in life for a moment and was reminded of it today on another blog.  So I thought I would “pass it on” and see if it helps someone else too.  I know it did me.  It is really freeing when remembered.

Guess What? No One Gives A Fuck!

Ok, so I’ve been at this self-publishing thing for about a year now, and I figured I’d share my wealth of knowledge. Here is everything I’ve learned, in no particular order:

NO ONE GIVES A FUCK!image

Yep, that’s it, guys. Thanks for reading, see ya back here in two weeks.

But seriously, some of the things I have learned:

You should always put your click-able Table of Contents at the beginning of your book, of course. Duh!

And, you should never put your Table of Contents at the beginning of your book, because when readers hit “Look Inside,” they should be able to jump right into the story, getting hooked, so they buy. Besides, if anyone wants to use your Table of Contents, they can always just click on it on their device.

(But in reality, once they are done looking at your book, they don’t really give a fuck.)

You should always have reviews and an excerpt in your blurb. How else is anyone going to know how good you are at first glance?

And you should never have reviews or an excerpt in your blurb, cause that irritates the hell out of people.

(Really? The placement of reviews is going to determine my entire career? Umm, nope. No one really gives a fuck.)

You should always have a small summary at the beginning of your book, so people who downloaded you months ago can be reminded very quickly of what your story is about when they get around to actually reading it.

And you should never do that, cause again, it irritates the hell out of people.

(Say it with me guys, who gives a fuck?)

You should definitely put your book in Kindle Select, because that is where the money is. And you should never put your book in Kindle Select, because you are leaving money on the table by not having your book available at B&N, Kobo, etc.

(And again.)

You should totally write pseudo-incest, because that genre is swimming in cash. But you should never write pseudo-incest, because it creeps people out, and no one will carry your book.

(You know the drill.)

I’ll stop, although I could go on FOREVER. The whole thing reminds me of that guy who finally wrote the manual on understanding women- it was blank. Here’s the thing- everyone is different, and you can’t please everyone.

I frequent a writer’s forum that is a wonderful mix of authors, in many different genres, all helping, learning from and fighting with each other. It’s awesome 99% of the time, although people do get testy. But even that is fun to watch.

Anyway, the other day someone asked one of those, ‘how do you get out of a slump when nothing is going right, and you can’t even give your book away for free because life sucks?’ kind of questions. I tried to help, by giving her my way of looking at things, but I think it just made her day worse. She responded to everyone else’s answer except mine. Oops. :)

I knew it was a risk to answer her the way I did, and I struggled with hitting ‘post,’ cause I am a people-pleaser at heart. But I truly wanted to help.

So here it is: (the word fuck wasn’t in the original post, because of their censors, but this version is how I really felt)

“Just know you are in good company. Everyone gets that way. And, this is either going to be very freeing or very harsh, but NOBODY GIVES A FUCK.

Telling myself those words breaks me out of my slumps.

I mean it in the very freeing way, not the harsh way. I don’t do harsh, I am the least harsh person on the planet. So, if there are two ways to take anything I say, take it the well-meaning way. I learned this early, thank God. I’m trying to teach it to my teen as well. NOBODY GIVES A FUCK.

That huge zit you fixate on when you look in the mirror, not seeing how awesome the rest of you is? No one else cares. They are just grateful they don’t have one. They probably don’t even see it. They see you, not the zit. Or they think, wow, sucky zit, and then they move the fuck on. You are not the center of anyone’s universe.

When your hair does that weird thing? Pull it back, no one else gives a shit, honest.

My favorite author waited five years, FIVE YEARS, to release a new book. Guess what? I don’t care. I’ll read it.

If this is my last post ever, and ya’ll never hear from me again, guess what? You won’t even notice. Nope, not suicidal. Nothing scary here, I promise. Just odd  :) Just a ‘we are all ants on this tiny little planet’ observation.

What the writer next to you does, doesn’t effect you! Their 250,000th sale, doesn’t effect you. Wait, is that effect or affect? Guess what, beyond the 2.2 seconds someone thinks ‘it should be the other one,’ no one gives a fuck.

Everyone cares about themselves. And that can either hurt, or open the entire universe up to your fingertips. (I choose the second one)

My kiddo heads off to face her day, depressed that her face is redder than normal. I tell her, you guessed it, no one cares. They are your friends, or your enemies, but no one cares if your face is redder than normal. They love you or hate you as is, regardless. Your red face won’t change anyone’s opinion.

Write what you want, revel in the sadness when you need to, revel in the joy when you can. Some will love you, some won’t. The ups and downs are inevitable.

Rant and commiserate. We do care. We feel your pain, not cause it’s happening to you, specifically. Hell, we don’t even know ‘you’. But cause we get it, we understand, cause it happens to us. No one looks closer at your successes or failures than you do. No one looks closer at my successes or failures than I do, cause guess what? Yep, you don’t care.

Run with that. Don’t write if you don’t want. Take a day off, take a year off. No one cares but you. Do what makes you happy. Write what and when you want to. Those that love you will find you. But not if you aren’t out there.

I write porn for God’s sake. No one cares if I ever put out another book. I will never be a bestseller, I will never change the world, I will never win an award, but I am happy, writing what makes me happy. If I stop being happy writing porn, you won’t care. If I go get a job at McDonald’s, you won’t notice. The world will rotate just fine, no matter what I do.

And guess what? Everything will be fine, no matter how it turns out!

Ten years from now you won’t remember what today felt like. You’ll either have ten years of work published, or you won’t.

That is so freeing to me. If I don’t hit ‘post’ you’ll never know I wrote this. If I do, some will take it the way I intended- as freeing and awesome, and some will think I’m an ass. But I can’t control that. So I carry on, making me happy.

So make you happy. People will buy your work, or they won’t. You can not control the sales numbers, you can only do what you can do. So let it go.

I know people hate the cliche, but it is what it is. You can not control the world, your sales, what others think about you, or damn near anything.

So be you. Write you. Be depressed when you feel depressed. Cry at weddings, laugh at funerals. Drink too much, be bitter when you must. What is that other cliche? You can only be you- every one else is taken.  But revel in it, cause there will never be another you, not ever.

So write what you want, what makes you happy, cause no one else can. This knowledge gets me out of the slumps. I hope I just made your day better, not worse. I promise, better was my intent.”

That is what I’ve learned about self-publishing. It is a lot like life- no one gives a fuck about you, but you. I mean that on the grander scale, of course. I love my child, I do. Very much. But do I give a shit if she grows up to become a doctor or a bar tender? Nope, don’t give a fuck. I’ll love her and be there for her either way. It’s her life, not mine.

I’ve found that there are two kinds of people that emerge once they realize that in the grand scheme of things, they don’t really matter- those who find that terrifying, and those who find it freeing.

I find it freeing. Cemeteries are full of people who lived, loved, cried, laughed, tried to make a mark on the world, lost children, lost jobs, were happy, were miserable, were human. But do we, now, really give a shit? Nope, we care about us, now.

Free on Amazon, today only June 24!

One hundred, five hundred, a million years from now, no one will give a shit if I wrote a book. Or not. Or even know my name. And I love that! It gets rid of the self-imposed microscope we think we live under, allowing me to do whatever I want, knowing that whatever I choose- no one else gives a fuck, but me.

So live your life, for you, cause you guessed it- I don’t give a fuck.

Oh, and Shared 3- Our Anniversary is out now, if you care. And today only, Occupied! Is free!

 

Shifting Currents

I am not succeeding very well in my goal to do at least one post a month here on my Babbling Brook blog.  Can’t necessarily say I have already run out of things to blog about, but it has more to do with the fact I am finding it hard to blog about what is really on my mind.  It is so very personal and I am not one to discuss the personal.  It is so very much outside my comfort zone. 

I was taught at a very young age that one does not share their feelings.  One does not talk about the uncomfortable.  One has to hold all that inside and not let anyone know what you feel or how hurt you may be.  A devastating lesson to learn, but I learned it very well, even though it is one lesson I should not have learned. 

I am following in the footsteps of my parents with illness, both physical and emotional.  Why and where they learned this lesson to pass on to me, I can only guess at this point because they are both now gone.  Although their parents lived – with one exception- well into their nineties, both my parents passed in their mid-seventies.  Young, in this family of longevity, most of their siblings still thrive. Here I am closing in on sixty without a lot of hope that I will even see seventy. 

These numbers seem so old to me, but in this day and age not really.  I frankly never gave a thought to ever even attaining this age, let alone anything older.  Another thing that I learned young, keep your feet on the ground and quit daydreaming.  Hence, I forgot how to dream and/or look to a future, if I ever learned to look to a future.  I honestly don’t remember a time when I seriously looked ahead and thought (dreamed) about what I wanted.  I floated along with the current, mostly. A few times I did take a rather radical fork in the stream of life, but that was mostly to escape where I was at and try a different direction, rather than work toward something defined.  Now that, shifting directions mid-stream, I am pretty sure I learned from my father.  I do remember doing that often growing up.

Maybe this blogging thing is pretty cool.  It is giving me an outlet to look at some things in my life that need examined, if not corrected.  I hadn’t really looked at this changing direction thing in quite this way before.  It is something for me to think about. 

The first shift happened when I graduated high school at the age of 17with a diploma that stated I could be an office clerk.  The obvious choice, and the choice my parents advised, was to apply for an office position opening my dad knew about in Lansing.  I did not want to work in an office in the city, not to mention, even if I did, I couldn’t start work until I was 18. I spent that summer kind of bumming around visiting relatives and friends and just kind of saying goodbye to my carefree days of childhood, since I knew adulthood was quickly looming on my horizon. 

When summer ended, I began the arduous task of finding a job.  I hadn’t taken any college prep in high school, I lived in a community that did not have a college and could not see a way to go away to University.  Neither did I have a boyfriend or any other prospects for marriage.  So, it was find a job!  However, I did mention, I was one of those lucky kids who graduated at age 17.  I wouldn’t turn 18 until October, and no one was hiring someone under the age of 18.  My mother didn’t think I was trying hard enough and that I was being lazy on my job hunt.  Do you know how embarrassing it is to have your mother take you job hunting?  Talk about a confidence builder when you confidence is already in the toilet. 

She took me to the unemployment office, after she realized that yes; I actually had submitted applications to every business in town. Guess what!  I got sent out of town, out of state if I really look at it. It was actually only about 30 miles away, and ended up being my first experience with a commute.  Anyway, Mom drove me to this nursing home to interview as a kitchen helper, (something that made no use at of my clerical diploma) and actually sat in on it – like I didn’t know what to do.  Things went along just like almost every other interview I had had, including the; “we can’t hire under 18” comment.  Mom’s chin hit the ground.  I wasn’t exaggerating.  Why hadn’t unemployment mentioned this?  Well actually, they had but Mom wasn’t listening.  She started sputtering and ruffling her feathers as only my Mom can. (Especially when she is discovering she may be wrong about something and not wanting to admit it.)  Then something extraordinary happened.  The interviewer looked at me and looked at the application and asked, if I would be interested in working on the floor.  On the floor?  What did that mean? 

Evidently, they were also looking for nurse’s aides.  Although he could not hire me in the kitchen because I was under age 18, he could bring me in and train me on the job as a nurse’s aide.  By the time I was trained and actually able to be hired for the job, I would be 18, which was actually only a week away at this point anyway.  With my mother sitting right there, what else was I to say but yes.  So began my career in the field of health care giver. (Also not using the Clerical diploma I had spent my high school years earning.)  I started the next day. 

No, I did not need my mother to drive me back and forth to work.  I actually had my own car and had had for all of my senior year.  She had only been dragging me around on this job search because I don’t think she thought I was doing it right.  I got the feeling that she thought if I had been doing it right, I would have had a job already.  After all, she had her first job at the ripe old age of 16.  She did not take into account the different era, or the different community.  I am not totally up on my history, but child labor laws were getting tighter and tighter.  Working before age 18 required permits from schools and parents, and there were no exceptions for us lucky few who graduated high school at 17 and did not go on to college.  Now if I had been a student looking for a part time gig, things may have been different.  But I was 18 and looking for full time work.  Mom did not want to see and/or understand this point.  I just didn’t know what I was talking about.   But, not real thanks to her; I did finally have a job and I had my own car to go back and forth.  My adult life was beginning.

Yes, I know it has been a while since I have written anything.  As usual, all kinds of excuses – er reasons.  Mostly, I am lazy.  

I spent a couple weeks in mid to late-January with the Bank’s family.  It is a lovely little saga written by Rose Gordon in series form.  I actually started to read some it some time ago, but found that I had started in the middle.  As with many series, although you may be able to read each book as a stand-alone because it deals with one couple and has a HEA, it is much nicer to read in order so you can get the full benefit of the supporting cast.  So, I had to search out and acquire the earlier novels. 

This series is Regency era romance and was written in groups.  The first series group was the Scandalous Sister’s.  We meet the oldest sister, Brook, in Intentions of the Earl.  The main thing one has to remember about these lovely sisters is, they are American, born and raised, suddenly transplanted to British Society with all of its rules and propriety.  If you get caught in a compromising situation there, you get married or you are “ruined”, even if it is as innocent as holding hands in the garden at night.  *Gasp*  How scandalous!   Now add to that an Earl who is being black mailed to “ruin” one of the sisters and you have an interesting story.  These are some outrageous characters that are not your usual staid British snobs.  This was a fun romp. 

So, I was looking forward to Liberty for Paul.  We met both Liberty- the middle sister, and Paul – a curate at the local church, in Intentions of the Earl.  They appeared to take an instant dislike of each other.  Liberty was very much into “propriety”.  She had over 500 books (they counted them) on the subject.  However, she was also a practical joker – what she called seeking revenge – and ended up finding herself in an extremely compromising position.  Liberty found herself married to Paul.  The antics and machinations that went on in this romance was a hoot.  I loved it.

Then we come to youngest sister, Madison in To Win His Wayward Wife.  She had the most scandalous story of all!  Wow!  What a shocker.  And she hooks up with Benjamin – the guy who was doing the black mailing in Intentions of an Earl.  Now you see why you benefit from reading these in order.  This one had a bit of intrigue and murder attempts going on.  Added spice to the story.

That brings us to the next group of books – The Grooms Series, which is where I had started with the first and second books, Her Sudden Groom and Her Reluctant Groom.  As mentioned, I enjoyed them, but too many of the earlier characters bled over into the stories and I often felt a bit lost.  Her Sudden Groom is about Alexander Banks – cousin to the sisters and Caroline Sinclair – cousin to his good friend Marcus.  Actually, Alex is betrothed to Marcus’ sister Olivia, who no one can stand.  Yep!  You guessed it.  This is about how he went from being betrothed to Olivia to being married to Caroline. 

In Her Reluctant Groom it is Marcus’ turn to get a bride but he almost blows it when Emma is at the church about to say her I do’s to another guy.  This one especially made me aware I needed to read the other books because so many of the other characters take a significant part in this book. More machinations. 

Book three of the Groom series is Her Secondhand Groom.  This is about Patrick – Best friend to Marcus, and Juliet – whose only claim to fame is her father borrowed money from Patrick’s father to send her to school and a season to find a husband.  She wasn’t successful, finds herself married to Patrick and Motherness to his three daughters.  These two needed to learn how to communicate before they could find their HEA. 

Book Four was Her Imperfect Groom.  Off all the books in this saga, this was my favorite. It is about Edwina Banks – Alexander’s sister and Sir Wallace – the guy Emma almost married in Her Reluctant Groom.  Of all the characters, these two are the most endearing.  They both have issues that are common place today, but back then, OMG.  The problems they had dealing.  I mean only descriptions were used to describe the issues.  Emma couldn’t read because the letters did funny things and went in different directions than what they were supposed to.  And Sir Wallace would suddenly find it difficult to breath, let alone talk, when stressed.  He coped by counting – everything and was very regimented in his routines.  (Does this sound like dyslexia, anxiety disorder and a little OCD?) A match made in heaven. It was wonderful how they complimented and calmed each other, supported and helped each other with everyone else throwing spanners in the works.  Yes, this one was my favorite.  I loved it. 

The next series of books was the Banks Brothers.  This took us back to see how Alexander and Edwina’s parents, Edward and Regina met and got married in His Contract Bride.  Yes, it started as an arranged marriage.  We also find out why the Banks family Townhouse in London was so uniquely decorated.  I was pleased to finally learn that piece of information.  The outrageously decorated drawing room, especially, figured heavily in more than one of the books.  It was a fun look at the why of many of the “traditions” of the earlier books. 

His Yankee Bride is about the sister’s parents, John and Carolina.  Ms Gordon started to loose me here.  It may be because I was reading one book after another, but I found this couple totally uninspiring.  I didn’t like them near as much as the others.  The story was okay, but there was, what I thought, a manger issue with this story.  Ms Gordon decided to use some local dialect/accent in this book.  She did it badly, and continued to attempt in the next two books.  In this book, the “house slave” that raised Carolina was the person doing the talking.  I am sorry, but house slaves did not sound like field slaves, especially if they were instrumental in raising the children.  They also did not sound like the Italian Mob which is the only group I can think of that uses “yous” all the time.  This took me right out of the story and made me shutter.  Totally ruined the book for me.

Then she does it again in His Jilted Bride about Elijah – younger brother of Alexander and Edwina, and Amelia – neighbor to the Banks’ and childhood friend.  In this book it is a restaurant owner who is speaking poorly.  Now we all know, according to Eliza Dolittle, that to work in a shop one has to speak “more gentile like”, not sound like the Italian Mob.  At least in this book, I found Elijah and Amelia a bit more likable and engaging. 

Finally we have His Brother’s Bride about Henry – Elijah’s twin and Laura – Elijah’s betrothed.  *grin*  We did come pretty much full circle with this book.  Not only had Laura kind of back mailed Elijah into signing a betrothal contract, she is the widow of the guy who got Madison in trouble in the first series.  A lot of loose ends were finally tied off and the series brought to a very satisfying end, until the kids grow up and start looking for mates.  But again, I was brought right out of the story with badly written “accent”.  Please, Please!  Don’t try and write a Scottish brogue, just tell us they are speaking with one.  I will hear the Scottish brogue as I read it without being yanked from the story.  I think this one was the worst yet, and in a very poignant part of the story, the wedding.  It would have been a beautiful wedding if I hadn’t had to deal with the Italian mob speaking the ceremony. 

Overall, with the exception of the Italian mob showing up in the last three books, I enjoyed this series of books very much.  The characters were wonderful and well written.  I enjoyed visiting with them in each book and would recommend them to anyone.  Just beware of the Italian mob.  😉

Where is the OFF switch?

Going through the list of blogs I follow, I can across this http://smutbookclub.com/now-you-done-pissed-me-off-why-facebook-needs-to-change/  It had me shaking my head in wonder and disgust.  Not that I didn’t agree with her topic.  I did.  But because here I am, again, wondering why people believe they have the right to tell others what to think, look at, read, believe, etc, etc, etc.  

Long ago, when I was young, (yep I really was once) my mother was one of those people.  She was very vocal about what was on TV and she didn’t want “her kids exposed to such filth!” (That was back in the day of only two channels.  You should have heard her when the choices were so many more.) She was that judgmental about such things right up until the day she died.  What did I take away from this?  Good grief!  If you don’t want me to watch it, turn off the TV!  And I still believe that today and probably will until the day I die.  

When I come across something on any of the social medias that I don’t like, I “turn it off”.  There are filters for that.  Or hide buttons. Or even the master OFF switch.  For instance, I got really tired of being bombarded with commercials ALL the time.  I no longer watch TV – at all!  My choice!  Yes I could make a fuss.  I could go on Facebook and grouse about it.  But really, what good would it do?  I didn’t like it, I turned it off.  Simple.  (Cancelled my subscription to HULU plus for the same reason.  I was paying a fee, why was I getting commercials? Again, my choice.)    No one is getting hurt.  I am not spreading negativity all over.  I am not trying to force someone else to my way of thinking.  I just simply made it go away.  

Am I really the only one who thinks this way?  I can’t be or there wouldn’t be the filters.  I found them and I, by any stretch of the imagination, am not a techie type.  My daughter, who is a techie type, did not show me where to find the filters.  There were some subjects in books I found offensive, (If you know me, I know that may be hard to believe, but it is true!) but did I raise a rant on Amazon?  NO!  I found that little button, “why recommended” and indicated I was “not interested”.  I no longer see that subject matter on my lists.  On fb, I got really tired of seeing all the scores of all the games my many friends play.  Do you know there are actually filters against that?  There is.  I don’t see the scores anymore!  There are filters for a lot.  You just have to find them and use them.  People regularly post instructions for how to do much of this, but I don’t thing they are read very much.  It is much easier to just complain and cause trouble.  

So, here I am again, on my little blog, going on a rant.  Will it do any good?  Probably not.  But I feel better.  Hopefully, only those that may be interested in what I might have to say are reading this.  For those that don’t like it or disagree, TURN IT OFF!