H.S. Clark Presents June Gillam Author Spotlight

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Excerpt from The first Novella – Memoir of a Gray Divorcee

I stopped in Arkansas after leaving New York City and my married life of 22 years.  Little did I know the course my life was about to take… Meet Pepper: She likes poetry, Eric Clapton, Furry handcuffs and Hot Candle Wax.  Novella #1 here.

Cover 1sm

My waitress wore an oval name tag on her uniform dress on which the name “Pepper” was stamped in black letters. She appeared to be around 28 years old and bore no ring on her left hand. Her hair was long, fine, brownish and was held back in a loose pony tail by a scrunchy. This gave her an innocent, yet devious look as she smiled and lowered her eyes shortly after mine met hers. As I’d said I have been practiced holding my gaze on the hardened population of New York City women for years. It’s a powerful thing to hold a gaze with a woman until she looks away. It is especially powerful when coupled with a slight smile and if she decides to break contact in a downward motion. A sign of submission; I like that.
Her uniform was traditional white with red fringe, a one piece waitress dress stamped out in some Chinese sweat shop. It appeared to be about half a size small on her and was stretched tightly around her waist and chest forcing her perfectly formed smallish breasts upward to the point of conservative teasing at the neck V which was held in place by a single large and straining white ornamental button. The thick polyester material molded around her just tightly enough to give me an idea of her true frame which was hidden beneath, which was surly firm and spectacular. I felt the unfamiliar sensation of testosterone as it began surging through my body. Before I had signed the divorce papers I had always managed to keep it in check. Now the willpower to do so was no longer needed and I squashed it immediately and with a definite finality.
I began to let nature take its course unchecked. There was no need for restraint anymore. No feeling of guilt. I had removed the governor from my mind’s carburetor. My body was no longer a U-haul van loping down the highway at a prescribed speed limit, it was an iRoc Z and I felt the need to drop the hammer.
Sometimes you have to say: “What the fuck?” “What the fuck” gives you freedom…”
Oh God, it’s that little turd from Risky Business, Booger. No wait, that was Revenge of the Nerds. In Risky Business his name was Miles.
It had been years since Miles had made an appearance. Parts of my brain, and body were awakening from a long winter’s hibernation. A sudden surge of adrenaline flooded my body as I turned to face Pepper at the booth.
You better go easy on that…
Shut up, Oprah.
Time had come to repeat the experiment once more, only this time all the safety equipment was to be removed, no goggles, no gloves, and no thick white lab coat. I was in new territory and I felt a little nervous, unsure of the outcome in a new set of theoretical steps I was to be taking. Reading about all of this for years was one thing, but applying these theories in a practical setting to their intended conclusion was another. But hey, if Theodor Kaluza could teach himself to swim by reading about it this should be a snap for me.
When she reached out to hand me the menu I took it from her intentionally brushing my index finger ever so slightly against inside of her wrist, where the skin was thin with a high concentration of nerve endings. Striking like a stealthy Ninja, she shuttered, then blushed. It was the sign I was looking for.
You see there’s a myth to these Italian and Spanish model types that had invaded Manhattan. They were revered as being some sort of mystical Adonis types, thought have some sort of magic because of their accents, dark hair, and complexions. Rubbish. They have no mysterious magical powers, no greater kung fu. The simple fact is that their culture allows touching in public and ours does not. Basically, they just don’t know any better and call it swank; or is that swag?. I get the two confused. I mean seriously, most of them aren’t even smart enough to figure out what it is that they have.
Touching is exotic, exciting and a sort of cultural taboo that really works to one’s favor here in America, England too so I am told – if executed properly. The key is light feathery contact – less than 2 seconds on the first go. Now for the follow up, make eye contact… speak directly to her left eye, bypass the logical side of her mind on the right, use the pipeline directly to her emotions.
“Wow Pepper, you have really pretty eyes.”
Now I should note: In order for any of this to work you have to be sincere. You simply can’t say one thing and mean another. There’s nothing mystical or magical about it. When you truly believe something and verbalize it the message comes across in your body language that, as I’ve said, women are innately tuned in to. Eighty percent of human communication is done through body language and thus directly to the subconscious, bypassing reason. Pepper truly did have amazingly beautiful light blue eyes, and I projected the shit out of this to her very core, by momentary making them the center of my universe.
She blushed once more and half closed those beautiful blue eyes, smiled and I held eye contact until she looked shyly down at the table, and smiled.
She responded with a quiet and shy: “Thank you.”
Dude, You nailed it!
Thanks, Miles.
I can now sit down in the booth.
“Can… can I get you something to drink?”
“I’d like some coffee please.”
Though it was after nine local time it was often a habit of mine to drink one cup of coffee before bed. For some odd reason it seemed to help me sleep better.
Pepper awkwardly spun around and hurried off to the waitress station with a giddy schoolgirl smile on her lips. I enjoyed watching her leave. The waitress uniform really did this view justice. She was tall and thin, well not so much thin as she was athletic. She had a spring in her step that caused her loosely tied long brown hair to flounce about her shoulders in a very attractive way. I’m guessing that she had been a cheerleader. I imagined her shoulder blades naked. For me the sexiest part of a woman is the upper back and lower neck. I’d studied female shoulder blades, upper back, and nape of the neck at length in my reading. In my head I was quite familiar with the correct pressure points and erogenous zones.
I cleared my head by setting up my laptop. It was time I joined the real world by turning my cell phone back on. In my computer bag I also carried a copy of the latest Sage Johnstone novel, Wolf Pup that I placed on the table next to the glass of ice water that had been served by Pepper upon my arrival at this booth. The glass was now profusely sweating in the Arkansas humidity and a ring of clear purified water was pooling around its base. I took a sip and the water tasted oddly strange, different than Brooklyn water.
Turning on one’s phone in this day and age was a snap. All I had to do was log in and enter my new, single person’s credit card number and the 40 dollars for unlimited voice, data, and text would kick in almost immediately. Which would have been great had I remembered to charge the damn thing. I found it to be a friggin’, brick when I retrieved it from my pocket, deader than my sex life had been over the last 18 years.
No matter, I would charge it when I reached my hotel room.
Pepper returned with a tray on which he had balanced a large plastic coffee pot, a cup and saucer, a tiny pitcher of half and half, and a small square porcelain container with assorted packets of sugar and artificial sweeteners. She gingerly set each object down in front of me with great care and poured piping hot black coffee into the coffee cup.
“Have you made your choice?”
“I have…” I paused staring deeply into her sky blue left eye with a slight smile. Once more she blushed and looked down with a slight smile.
You’re really better at this than you think.
Not now, Miles!
“… I’ll have a chicken fried steak with white cream gravy, and french fries. It wouldn’t upset me if a little of gravy spilled over onto the fries.”
After a short delay Pepper began writing on her order pad. She kept eyeing the book.
“I read that book, Wolf Pup. It’s by Sage Johnstone, right?”
You and the other six people this month.
“Why, yes it is.”
I began sipping the coffee Pepper had poured for me.
“I downloaded it on Kindle after I saw it featured in the New York Times indie book review. They gave them four-and-a-half stars… I thought it deserved 5! Oh my God, it was so hot! She’s a genius!”
Immediately the hot coffee I had just sipped bypassed my larynx and dribbled straight into my lungs. I began choking.
OOOOOH! Did she just say the NEW YORK Fuckin’ TIMES!

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What’s new, friends? (Book Reviews)

What’s new, friends?

From: thewriteromantics

The Write Romantics have made some lovely friends in the year or so since we started blogging.  Some have come along for interviews, others we have met in person at RNA events or through Twitter and Facebook.  Many of these lovely new friends of ours have also agreed to be contributors to our charity anthology.  We thought it was only right to set up a page on the blog where we could share news from our good friends and tell you a bit about what they’ve been up to since the last time they dropped by…

Carol Cooper

Carol, who was already a successful journalist and non-fiction author alongside her medical and teaching careers, launched her debut novel earlier this year.  Here she tells us what’s been happening since her last visit to the blog:

One-Night-at-the-Jacaranda_cover_eBook_sml‘One Night at the Jacaranda’ has been selling strongly, especially since it got a lovely new cover from designer Jessica Bell, and it was great to see it was a finalist in the Indie Excellence Awards 2014 and a quarter-finalist in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Awards 2014.  I’m now writing my second novel which will take many of the characters from ‘One Night at the Jacaranda’ into new adventures, which like the first book will be based in London.  This autumn I’ll be taking part in the Chorleywood LitFest.  I’m also looking forward to attending the Festival of Romance, though I had to explain to my new husband that it’s for romance writers, not romance seekers. Read our review of Carol’s fantastic novel here:  Review of One Night at the Jacaranda


Linda Huber

Lindas book coverLinda is one of our wonderful anthology contributors and you can read the sneak peek of her story on the anthology page.  Linda’s first novel ‘The Paradise Trees’ was published by Legend Press in February 2013 and her follow-up novel ‘The Cold Cold Sea’ is realised this month.  Find out more about Linda here.

‘The Paradise Trees’ - There is someone watching Alicia’s every move. Someone who has a plan of his own. Someone who will not stop until the people he loves most can rest together, in paradise.

‘The Cold Cold Sea’ – No-one can underestimate a mother’s love for her child, and no-one can predict the lengths one will go to, to protect her family.

Merryn Allingham (aka Isabelle Goddard)

The Crystal CageThe last time Isabelle came to see us on the blog she just had the one name but, as she has so many stories to tell, it turned out one name just wasn’t enough!  Isabelle has popped back to tell us all about her alter ego, Merryn, the exciting news about her new novel and her upcoming plans:

I’m no longer writing pure romance or setting my books in the Regency. Instead I’ve moved on a few years to Victorian England and changed genre, too – to mystery and suspense with a sprinkling of romance. A new genre deserves a new name and so Merryn Allingham has come into being. ‘The Crystal Cage’ is the first Allingham novel and tells the story of a long-lost tragedy, and the way echoes from the past can powerfully influence the life of a modern day heroine. The next few books will see another move timewise, a suspense trilogy set in India and wartime London during the 1930s and 1940s. I’ve found that I love writing mystery along with romance, and love dipping into different time periods. I expect Merryn will be around for quite some time!

www.merrynallingham.com

http://www.isabellegoddard.com

Kerry Fisher

School_Gate final jpegKerry first came to see us in the early days of the blog, to tell us all about her self-published novel then call ‘The Class Ceiling’.  Since then, Kerry has secured herself an agent and book deal with Avon Harper Collins – wonderful news!  Her debut novel is now titled ‘The School Gate Survival Guide’ and is available now in e-book form, with the paperback out on 11 September 2014.  Kerry will be coming back to see us on the blog in October, to tell us all about her follow-up novel and what life is like as a published author.

Amazon link: http://bit.ly/SchoolGate

Kerry’s Author page: http://www.kerryfisherauthor.com

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Kindlemojo.com Interview Profile #3495 Daniel Wallock

Daniel has published one book and his writing has appeared in Burningword, Wild Quarterly, Paragraph Planet, ExFic, The Vending Machine Press, and The Bolt Magazine. He’s received four writing awards including first place in San Jose State University’s Nonfiction Short Story Contest. He also received a Gold Key for nonfiction, the highest regional honor, from Scholastic’s Art and Writing Awards. Daniel worked as manager of marketing at Ginosko Literary Journal and he’s founder of This Very Breath Journal.

http://www.kindlemojo.com/dwallock

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Kindlemojo.com Interview: Garrard Hayes Profile #1203

Bourbon & Blood: Modern & Gritty Crime Novel Thrusts War Hero Into Brutal New York Drug Underworld

In Amazon’s 100 bestsellers for over 36 weeks in Organized Crime, Vigilante Justice and Kidnapping.

Timely, plausible and shockingly vivid, Garrard Hayes’ latest novel depicts the downward spiral of an under-appreciated United States Military hero. While Bill Conlin survived the risks and rigors of serving in Afghanistan, can he find his way out of New York City’s dark drug underworld with his life and dignity intact?

While the nation pays proud tribute to its brothers and sisters in arms, many returning from tours of duty in the Middle East endure great struggle and hardship when returning to ‘normal’ life. In a bold and engrossing new novel by Garrard Hayes, one war hero’s life is turned upside down in ways he could never have imagined.

‘Bourbon & Blood’ proves that, while it may appear to be a million miles away from a war zone, home soil is often far from safe.

Synopsis:

In the tradition of action-packed noir thrillers, comes a crime fiction story about an otherwise good guy “bent” bad when he’s pulled into the underbelly of the New York City crime scene.

Drugs, sex slavery, prostitution, murder… Former soldier and decorated war hero Bill Conlin finds himself immersed in it all when he can’t find “respectable” work after his tour in Afghanistan. When his cousin, Jimmy, first tries to talk him into joining Irish mafia boss Frank Sullivan’s gang, Bill brushes him off.

All Bill really wants is a normal life with a nice girl, and he’s pretty sure the waitress he just met, Dana, is the one. But with his savings running low, and desperate to get out of his Hell’s Kitchen near-tenement apartment building, Bill, against his better judgment, agrees to a meeting with Mr. Sullivan–and immediately hits the point of no return… Now with a brand new Lincoln and fancy new uptown digs (complete with a live-in girl whose only purpose is to serve him, and a wardrobe packed with weapons), Bill’s tasked to take down a Harlem-based Mexican prostitution ring.

One thing leads to another, however, and the deeper he gets, the more he learns, and the more tangled up he becomes in a lifestyle he never wanted. But how long until he takes matters into his own hands… And what will the ultimate cost be…

Mystery and suspense lurk around every corner in this action & adventure novel based in New York City.

About me:

Garrard Hayes is a lifelong New York resident whose ancestors made their living on the streets of Manhattan and Brooklyn. His love of action and crime fiction, together with a knack for good, gritty storytelling, sparked him to write. He lives in New York with his wife, two children, and three dogs. Garrard Hayes hosts a crime fiction blog at garrardhayes.com.

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Reviews: Heronfield by Dorinda Balchin

'Heronfield' by Dorinda Balchin
‘Heronfield’ by Dorinda Balchin

As all readers know, it is sometimes difficult to find the ‘right’ book for you. With the internet it is easy to search genres and read reviews. Sometimes, though, reviews don’t match up to what we experience when we read the book. Maybe it is because we are all different and react differently to stories. Maybe, as has been discussed elsewhere, some of the reviews are not as honest as one would hope.

That is why I am delighted (perhaps thrilled would not be too strong a word!) to have received a review of my novel, Heronfield, from the prestigious Historical Novel Society. If you like historical novels then you know that their reviews can be relied on to ‘tell it as it is’.

If you have already read Heronfield then perhaps you can add your thought about the book here. If not, then perhaps this review might whet your appetite!

So what  did they say? Well, here it is…

The Kemshall family home, Heronfield, has been turned into a convalescent hospital during World War II. Tony’s brother, David, a hero to all in his family, is a Spitfire pilot and decorated as one of the men involved in the Battle of Britain. Tony, a survivor of Dunkirk, finds himself facing several battles: fighting a father who believes him a coward, fighting for the love of the woman of his dreams and fighting to keep the biggest secret from them all because Tony is a British spy, working in occupied France.

Heronfield is a hefty tome; a large paperback over 400 pages long, an indication of the amount of story here. The course of six years is spanned, from the beaches at Dunkirk to the liberation of the concentration camps. Many of the chapters have beginnings that are akin to the Pathé News segments, telling what is happening in other areas of the world before returning to the main action in either Heronfield or St Nazaire – a brilliant way of giving the reader all the information required.

The characters are incredibly realistic; it is difficult to set Heronfield down. It would not be possible to write a story about the bravery of the soldiers or the Resistance without making sure that the reader is aware of just why they were so brave, and this is put across tactfully, but still gives the reader an idea of the horrors faced by these people.

An amazing read.

The review

Dorinda Balchin’s website

‘Heronfield’ book website

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Kindlemojo.com Interview Brian Sanders CEO of Penned

Penned is a new and exciting App for writers for iPhone and (soon) Android in which writers can share work with readers and get feedback, build fan followings. Stories, poems, excerpts, and non-fiction. It’s a great tool for indie authors on the go. AND it’s free.

Website

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Book Reviews: “The Enchanting Legends Of Shiloh Mansion:The Young King”

Enchanting Legends Of Shiloh Mansion Final Cover

Are you looking for a good book for the teen in your life – one that has supernatural and high tech themes but not filled with vampires, witches and similar themes that are so prevalent in a lot of teen novels these days? This may be just the book you’re looking for.

What readers are saying…….!

I  just finished reading your book The Enchanting Legends of Shiloh Mansion “the young king”. As a matter of fact I read it to several children. It was enchanting, mysterious, funny, and rich with Love and God’s promise. Your book should be made into a movie as told to me by one scholar. The characters became alive as told to me by another scholar, and a magical journey we all took..”

Dawne Martin
Parent Coordinator
New York City Department of Education
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“Greetings my Dear Sister and Namesake: I have read the book and I must say what an awesome work of literacy it is. I am happy to say this is a book that will go in the library for my grandchildren to enjoy. I especially like that the book related so very well with the word of God. and how the Land of the Enchanting Legends reminds me of what heaven would be like. You are and awesome author and your word just leaped from the pages. BRAVO MY SISTER…BRAVO… You should be proud of yourself…This book is amazing.”

DeBorah Fields
Author & Speaker Extraordinaire
Ministry Director, A Godly Woman Worldwide Ministries,Inc.

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“Wanted to say this was so great and hoping you will have follow up stories as I want more! This is a book I am happy to share with my friend’s daughters that are Christians; as it seems a hard find for moral Christian stories for our youth! You will love this tale that takes you back in time, I was loving this christian content that I will gladly lend to children to read also. I want more tales from this author! Great gift for any ages. Descriptive content that feels like you are right there living in the moment! Blessings to the author indeed! Love it and blessings!”

Kendra Gillian
Prison ministry and proud Christian!

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Bible Stories As Great Adventures For Children To Appreciate

These days children have a plethora of choices of what to read. Kid’s fiction is exciting and full of characters with special powers and abilities that are hard for a typical bible story to rival. This book does a nice job in presenting the bible as a collection of wondrous stories, The Great I Am and and introducing a character that kids don’t often hear about in Bible Study or Sunday School – Josiah, a young king they can relate to because of his age.

As an introductory novel of what will likely be a series, it does take great pains to introduce us to the characters, their family, upbringing and surroundings so we are able to form a good idea of who each of them are. Once the children are transported to the time of Josiah, the author does an excellent job of describing the sites and sounds of that time and you feel transported with the children on their brief adventure. I am looking forward to more stories from The Great I Am with new characters to share with my children.”

N. Hill
Amazon
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Great Children’s book for Christians!

 

The story focuses around a family, which consist of a mother, father, and three children 2 girls and a boy. It started out a bit slow as there was a lot of back story. Once the story got going it was really good. It took another approach to telling the story of the Bible (“Book of I Am”) . It is a Christian story book and it uses scripture to help tell the stories! It was a really good book as it was only 93 pages it was pretty easy to read. It is geared more towards children between 8 and 12 so reading it as an adult I thought that parts were lost on me.”

Genieva Barfield
Goodreads

The “Enchanting Legends Of Shiloh Mansion: The Young King” is available in soft cover & e-book at Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble, and othe online retailers. A limited edition hard cover, author signed copy is available at the  author’s website.

The book is nationally distributed and can also be purchased at most book stores.

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The Enchanting Legends Of Shiloh Mansion:The Young King

Enchanting Legends Of Shiloh Mansion Final Cover

D. K. Ogans creatively blends this story about family, youth, and the use of High-tech to take us on an adventure to a real place and time where we can experience teens with determination, perseverance, and courage. This family and “The Young King” are true role models for families and youth of today.

We live in a time where the tales of vampires, witches, witchcraft, warlocks, spell casters, ogres, hobbits, monsters and super heroes vie for our attention to entertain us. There really are some true Super Heroes which you will find in this Christian Fiction novel, The Enchanting Legends of Shiloh Mansion:The Young King”.

It’s a story about a marvelous modern day family. The main characters, Eliza, Faith, and Daniel are uniquely gifted youth. With the ability to time travel, these bright, innovative “smart teens” responsibly dare to go and do the things that most only imagine! Sir Iverson and Lady Angelica are their wise, loving, nurturing parents, and they themselves too are quite an eclectic extraordinary pair. They have provided their super family with every possible modern convenience and gadgetry available.

Here with the latest state-of-the-art interactive technology and endless massive Wi-Fi networks at their disposal, everything is set in motion.

Shiloh Mansion is where it all begins. It is a fascinating place situated in the midst of a forest that continuously unfolds an intriguing revelation.

Are you looking for a good book for teens – one that has supernatural and high tech themes but not filled with vampires, witches and similar themes that are so prevalent in a lot of teen novels these days? This may be just the book you’re looking for.

It’s available in soft cover & e-book at Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble, and othe online retailers. A limited edition hard cover, author signed  copy is available at my author’s website.

The book is nationally distributed and can also be purchased at most book stores.

 

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My second and third favorite things.

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